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Welcome to the Australian Environmental Pest Managers Association November 2020 edition. Please read on below for more details below or visit our website for online version
AEPMA National Office - Update

Dear Members,

Welcome the November 2020 edition of the AEPMA Newsletter. 

I hope you are all safe and well in these challenging times.

In this month’s edition we would like to introduce you to BugROff Pest Busters, winners of the  Business Award Class 1 – “A pest management company with fewer than 10 people” in the BASF Pest Manager of the Year awards.

Our branch updates this month are from Victoria and New South Wales.  

Emma Mendelsohn - Chair of the AEPMA Victorian Branch has complied information regarding the transition into the Third Step in the Victorian Roadmap to Recovery along with details of VECCI (Victorian Employers Chamber of Commerce and Industry) membership for AEPMA members.  

Patrick Legey - Chair of the AEPMA NSW ACT Branch has an update regarding New South Wales EPA along with some question’s AEPMA members raised regarding training and native bird control.

Also, just a reminder if you have not signed up yet the FAOPMA Virtual Conference will be taking place on the 18th & 19th of November.  Further details can be found below.

Thank you for your continued support, and if you have any questions please don’t hesitate to contact us. 

Vasili Tsoutouras


BASF Pest Manager of the Year – Meet Our Winners

Over the next few editions of the AEPMA eNewsletter we will be introducing you to the winners from each category of the recent Pest Manager of the Year competition – sponsored by BASF 

This month it is the winner of our Business award Class 1 “fewer than ten employees”
Winner: BugROff Pest Busters – Steve Olver

Tell us a little about BugROff Pest Busters – 

Pest Buster started in 2008 by Steve Olver, Owner/Director with a passion for the Pest Control industry and a vision to one day franchise. Steve started as a single operator and now has a team of 7 in the local Horsham office and 2 franchisees being in Myrtleford and Warrnambool, covering the Western, North East and South West Victoria. 

Why did you decide to enter the competition?  Is this your first time in the competition? 

We have entered a few times and always used the report card as anopportunity to learn, grow and improve BugROff Pest Busters. We love entering for the above reasons to bench mark ourselves against similar sized businesses.
How was the judging process?  

Nerve racking, once the interview started it was a lot more relaxing. The feedback from the judges is always very valuable and important 

Share your secrets!  How did you win this competition?  

Continue to learn, ask questions from previous winners and even take the time to visit them. Be transparent, prepared and concise answering the judges questions directly.

Has winning helped your business?

Winning has certainly helped BugROff Pest Busters, it has given new clients confidence in engaging our services. Existing clients we have thanked personally, with cards and by radio ensuring they are a part of the award. Their business and loyalty is part of what drives us to always be better including the passion for the industry. This award has also given our team a real boost they we are not just a bush pest control business but a part of something so much bigger.

What tips would you give potential entrants for next year?

Enter into the awards to gain insight on how your business is viewed in comparison to others in the industry, be willing to improve and listen. Winning is an added bonus!

Victoria & New South Wales / ACT Branch Updates

AEPMA Victoria Branch - Emma Mendelsohn (Chairperson)

Great news, the announced relaxation of regulations sees us transition into the Third Step in our Roadmap to Recovery from 11.59pm 27th October, 2020 which allows our Industry to expand our services under the specified category ‘Repairs, Maintenance and Cleaning’ (see attached Roadmap for Reopening Government Document).  

We are now able to Open with a  COVID Safe Plan in place.  Unlike Stage 3, All businesses even those with fewer than 5 Employees will NOW require a COVID Safe Plan before fully reopening.  

Read more here

AEPMA NSW / ACT update – Patrick Legey (Chairperson)

Hello to our NSW ACT members!

While not a huge amount has happened since our last meeting on 24 August, I would like to share with you some of the recent correspondence between NSW AEPMA and NSW EPA.

NSW EPA would like to inform you of the extension of the current temporary exemption to several mandatory pesticides training requirements in NSW until 21 April 2021.

You will recall that because some training courses have been impacted by COVID-19 social distancing rules, the NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) has issued a pesticide training temporary exemption that applies to a number of types of pesticide users. The initial temporary exemption was due to expire in October 2020 but has recently been renewed and now allows those pesticide users an extension until 21 April 2021 to complete their training.

The renewed exemption rolls forward the existing temporary exemption provisions so holders of pest management technician and fumigator trainee permits now have until 21 April 2021 to enrol in those courses.

Read more here 

ProTrain – Australia and New Zealands leading Pest Management training provider

ProTrain’s Bruce and Bernie Dekker have been involved and active in the Pest management industry since the 1990s and providing Training / Assessment / Mentoring plus Consultancy services to all levels of industry associated with Pest Management and Fumigation for over 15 years.

Current clients include small and large pest management and fumigation firms from Australia and New Zealand, Federal Government, State Government, Local Government, Grain handling groups, as well as Fresh produce groups and many importing / exporting businesses.

With such a diverse range of customers across multiple industries that connect back to the Pest management industry its understandable that new and existing people look to Protrain (an Australian family owned and independent business) for all their Pest Management and Fumigation Training / Assessment and Consultancy needs.

One of the key success factors for ProTrain has been their ability to ensure  consistent delivery of  pest management practical components to ensure students completing the programs feel confident and workplace ready to add value back to their employer .

ProTrain is the first in the industry to add the new CPP41619 Certificate IV in Urban Pest Management to their training and assessment scope . 

“There are always changes in the industry with innovation in chemistry and equipment . Its important to understand how these changes can impact the industry and to ensure we stay at the forefront of training delivery by constantly reviewing and updating our programs to offer our customers the opportunity to be the best technicians they can. 

Having 3 industry experienced trainers who can deliver CPP41619 Certificate IV in Urban Pest Management  means we can bring a lot of industry knowledge to maximise the value we add to our customers training needs.

The new CPP41619 Certificate IV in Urban Pest Management is a great option for Supervisors, Operations Managers, Senior Technicians as well as pest managers looking to upgrade their skills and qualifications. “ said Bruce Dekker - ProTrain Director

For more information, or to check their training calendar,  have a look at the website for the scope of services available or contact ProTrain at or Bruce on 0418 786 711.

Dekker Nominees Pty Ltd t/a CQ ProTrain RTO 40524
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FAOPMA Virtual Pest Summit 18th & 19th November 

The FAOPMA virtual pest summit will take place online on November 18th & 19th. 

Presentations will focus on the future of Covid-19, the economic impacts to the pest control industry and how to survive these challenges.  There will be more than 30 speakers and virtual booths for opportunities to learn about the latest products.

More information can be found here

David Seccull joins Agserv Melbourne

We're pleased to announce that David Seccull has joined the Agserv Melbourne Team, taking on the role of Branch Manager. David brings many years of valuable experience, having worked in the agricultural, industrial and property maintenance sectors.

David is looking forward to getting out and about and meeting as many of our Victorian customers as possible, as soon as Covid restrictions allow. In the meantime, you'll find him at our Port Melbourne branch.

David can be contacted on 0434 698 215 or 9676 4444.

ATTRATHOR® Label Extended For The Control Of All Crawling Insects

Ensystex’s Attrathor Targeted Insecticide is one of the most popular insecticides in the Australian market. It has proven a standout performer with its unique dual microencapsulated ‘attract and kill’ formulation.

Steve Broadbent, regional director for Ensystex, is therefore very pleased to advise that, “The APVMA approved Attrathor label has been greatly extended and now provides a general claim that it may be used for the control of “crawling insects and pests”. This means it can now be used as a professional pest manager's go to product, no matter what insect pest they are dealing with.

“Attrathor is used by so many professionals for the control of cockroaches, ants and houseflies, that it is always on their truck. This new, improved labelling means that no matter what insect pest they might come across, Attrathor is approved to deal with it.

Read more here

Real-Time Reporting App Advancements - Rapid Inspect

In an increasingly litigious society, it pays to protect your business by applying best practice techniques to every job. And safeguarding it through insurance, of course. Combining these will greatly reduce your chances of financial and reputational issues from inaccurate or vague client reporting.

At Rapid Solutions, we are currently seeing an increase in enquiries regarding potential claims for pre-purchase inspection reports. Remember: if your recommendations aren’t super tight, you may find yourself at least proportionately liable.

As an insurer focused on reducing the number of claims our clients experience, a while back Rapid Solutions created the Rapid Inspect report app. This has just undergone a major update, making real-time reporting simpler, customer friendly and easy to navigate whilst you’re on the job

On-the-job mobile reporting

Read more here

Controlling Termites Can Be Challenging

When it comes to controlling termites, it can be challenging at the best of times. Termites can tunnel 50 metres or more from their nest in search of a food source, such as timber floorboards or other susceptible timber. They can enter through wood in direct contact with soil or build mud tunnels from the ground to the lowest accessible timber. From there they can access the rest of the property, whether that is a residential home or a commercial building, including the structural timbers in the walls and the roof.

Termites are one of the most destructive timber pests, so when dealing with active termites, whether it’s a homeowner or the owner of a commercial building, everybody wants to bring the termites under control very quickly to minimize damage.

As Pest Control Operators, it is our duty of care to offer a range of options which may include a chemical barrier, termite dusting or foaming, or a termite baiting system.

Read more here

Trelona® ATBS – Ongoing testing in the toughest of conditions

Development and testing of Trelona Advanced Termite Bait System (ATBS) commenced in 2012 with field trials in some of the toughest Australian conditions. During these trials Trelona Termite Bait was found to be effective on key subterranean termite species and its unique Puri-cell bait matrix has shown to be highly palatable to all species of termite.

The ATBS plastic components were tested in harsh conditions and proved to perform over many years of service. BASF has a long-term commitment to the continued testing of the ATBS components and Trelona Termite Bait. Multiple field locations have been established to regularly assess the system and study the performance of the Trelona over time as the bait ages in Australian soil conditions.

Read more here

Make more money in Precon

In the highly competitive pre-construction termite market, most operators fight on price – “price is everything”. Except it’s not. As with any sales opportunity, understanding the needs and issues of your customer is key. By promoting products and services that meet their needs and solving their problems you can promote the value in your services and focus less on price. In the pre-construction market, Greenzone Termite and Insect Repellent Barrier is creating value for builders and more profit for pest managers.

Time is money for builders. Delays in construction can be very expensive. As we know, most delays in construction are often due to project management issues and/or being let down by one or more of the other trades. If the builder or project manager can trust you to deliver the correct termite protection solutions and make their life easier – by being flexible in your application timing, quick in installation and responsive to help solve problems – you really start to add value. Using Greenzone as a key product in your pre-construction armoury can certainly help.

Read more here

Greenzone Termite And Insect Barrier Foam Successfully Defends Patent Challenge

The innovative nature of the Greenzone® Termite and Insect Barrier Technology was recently recognised by IP Australia.

This is despite the validity of the Australian patent application being challenged by a third party during 2019-2020. The challenge was from an Australian based competitor who attempted to argue against the innovative process involved in the research and development of Greenzone’s combined termite repellent and compressible foam product – the subject of the Australian patent.

“The grant of the patent serves as a testament to the strength of our research and product development program, and underlines our ability to innovate where our competitors cannot”, said Paul Commerford, Director of Greenzone.

It also indicates the willingness from the group of owner’s to firmly defend the validity of their patent applications, despite the costs and burden.

“The patent is part of our broader IP Strategy and protects our products and supports the continued delivery of cutting edge technology to our customers. The depth of our industry experience on the frontline of the construction industry has always been critical to the inventive process of this product and we are continuing to use our expertise to expand our product offerings and relationships”

Free Online Environmental Biosecurity Roundtable Webinars

We are now half-way through the series and have seen over 750 participants join webinars over the last four months to learn more about environmental biosecurity.

With three more webinars remaining in the series, we wanted to remind you that registrations are still open for the upcoming sessions.


Visit the Eventbrite registration page and register for your preferred session to receive the MS Teams joining information and a copy of the program when it becomes available (this usually occurs a week or two before the date of the webinar). If you wish to be register for all the remaining webinars, simply select the ‘register me for all webinars’ ticket option which can be found under any ticket option. Information on past webinars – Have your say!

If you want to catch up and watch previous webinar recordings, or download slides and related information, visit the Environmental Biosecurity Webinars HaveYourSay page. The page also has a guestbook and online forum where you can ask questions or discuss webinar topics with other participants. The page is the main ‘information hub’ supporting all webinars in 2020 and beyond. To access the content, you will need to register as a new user and sign in. Related information will be uploaded prior to each webinar and a dedicated discussion forum will be available for each webinar. 2020 Environmental Biosecurity Webinar Series

10 November, 11:00am-12:30pm (AEDT): Phytophthora case studies
24 November, 11:00am-12:30pm (AEDT): Biosecurity in our backyard
3 December 2:00pm-3:30pm (AEDT): Myrtle rust

National Biosecurity Forum

This year, the National Biosecurity Forum will be an online event run over the week of 9 November 2020. For more information and to register, click here.

2021 Environmental Biosecurity webinars

The Environmental Biosecurity Office will be running another series of webinars in the first half of 2021 and welcome nominations and suggestions for topics and presenters. Email suggestions to

If you have any colleagues or other contacts who may be interested in attending the webinars, please forward this email to your networks. Registering in Eventbrite will ensure you receive the joining information and program for each webinar as they become available.

We look forward to you joining us.

Rat Race : Vermin Follow Suit to the suburbs after CBD's go quiet

As Sydneysiders shifted their lives from central business districts to the suburbs amid the COVID-19 pandemic, they were joined by some unwelcome company: rats.

Rat catchers, councillors and academics have observed a reduction in vermin in the CBD, and some also detected a commensurate rise in rat numbers in residential areas, backyards and bushland. Read more here – Credit Sydney Morning Herald

Scientists remove first 'murder hornet' nest found in US

A team of entomologists in full-body protective gear vacuumed Asian giant hornets out of a tree in Washington state on Saturday, eradicating the first nest of the so-called murder hornets found in the United States.

The state's agricultural department said it had spent weeks searching for and trapping the hornets, which attack honeybee hives and could pose a threat to humans, because they can sting repeatedly with venom that is stronger than a honeybee's.

Read more here - Credit Sydney Morning Herald

Welcome to the fang club: New spider species found in backyard

Discovering a new animal species – isn’t that only done by intrepid scientists in far-flung places such as the Amazon rainforest? Apparently not, because a civilian has found a new species of spider on a backyard bin in New South Wales.

Keen citizen scientist Amanda De George said it was the electric-blue face and bright blue eyes that drew her to the four-millimetre-long jumping spider walking across her recycling bin in the coastal town of Thirroul, 80 kilometres south of Sydney.

In June Mrs De George posted a photo and a "what is this?" callout on the Australian Spider Identification Page on Facebook, whose followers include keen amateur arachnophiles and scientists.

Read more here – Credit Sydney Morning Herald

Important Dates


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